National University of Singapore (NUS) and Faculty of Cultural Sciences UGM launched Contemporary Wayang Archive (CWA) in the Faculty of Cultural Science’s Auditorium on Saturday (25/2). The launch of the website was attended by professional wayang (shadow puppet) masters, such as Ki Enthus Susmono, Ki Jlintheng Suparman, Ki Nanang Hape, Ki Catur “Benyek” Kuncoro, and Ki Aneng Kiswantoro. Contemporary Wayang Archive is a website containing contemporary shadow puppet shows, also information on shows, translation, and notes on shadow puppets.
CWA has features for contemporary wayang archives. It can track down all wordings in the sub-titles in Javanese, Indonesian, and English. The CWA excells because it carries English version that will enable international audience to see the archives.
CWA is also complemented with notes on word play, allusion, euphemism, culture and history, as well as multi-interpretation expression. Head of English Literature study programme, Adi Sutrisno, M.A., appreciated the launch of CWA. In his opinion, CWA will be the window of the world for the international community that wants to learn contemporary wayang.
Speakers of the event also appreciated the launch of CWA. Ki Nanang Hape appreciated the wayang archives in the CWA. He said that manyshadow puppet masters did not have time to document their performances.
“It’s not that we don’t want to document the wayang shows, but because our energy has been fully spent on the shows and contexts and aspects of the shows that we cannot do the documentation ourselves,” said Ki Nanang Hape.
The CWA site is expected to be able to document and archive each wayang show so the works of wayang masters can be enjoyed from time to time. “Wayang will not die and survive from time to time. That’s the great thing about Indonesian shadow puppets,” said Ki Enthus Susmono.